With speculation about the GT200 core slowly starting to spiral out of control, Expreview have perhaps now made things worse. They believe that the recently-launched 9800 GX2 will be discontinued in June - roughly a month before the 9900-series is expected to make a debut. The latest news regarding the 9900-series pointed out that a 9900 GT, GTX and GX2 would be included - Expreview being the source of the GX2 rumour. What's true and what's not remains to be seen, though the 9800-series performance is anything but satisfactory.
After first denying the rumoured 5% workforce reduction, AMD has now contradicted their word and laid-off a rather large 10% of its staff. Lower than expected financial results for quarter one are to blame for the lay-offs, which AMD describes as an adjustment to its cost structure. In addition to the workforce reductions, which will be effective at the end of the third quarter, AMD expects its first quarter revenues to be 15% lower than originally intended. On the bright side though, AMD's revenue is still expected to be 22% higher year-over-year.
Kinc and Elmor are no strangers in the record-breaking game, and despite a rather long break, they've returned with yet another 3DMark 06 record. Like the last three records set, the latest uses a CrossFireX setup consisting of dual HD 3870 X2's clocked at 990MHz/1125MHz. A QX9650 (C1 stepping) clocked at 5719MHz - 100MHz less than the previous world record - along with an Asus P5E64 WS Pro were also part of the setup. Settling for a score of 32,601 points, they've happily returned to the top of the ORB one more time.
It's been quite some time since we last heard news about Microsoft's proposed acquisition of Yahoo. Back in February, Microsoft offered to buy the web-giant for $31 per-share, which at the time was worth $44.6 billion. Yahoo denied the offer, and Microsoft hinted that this would result in a hostile takeover. Microsoft has now stated that if the two companies don't reach an agreement within the next three weeks, the Redmond giant will present the offer directly to Yahoo's shareholders. Let's hope Yahoo's plea for help pays off.
The long awaited, and long delayed AMD+ ready NVIDIA nForce 780a SLi chipset will make a debut this quarter, and Asus prepared for the event by basing some of its latest products on it. Still catering for the high-end, the Crosshair II offers features such as AM2+/AM2 compatibility, DDR2-1066 memory support, HyperTransport 3.0 and much much more.
A world first from ASUS, a Radeon HD 3650 graphics card with 1GB of video memory. These video cards are the latest generation of ATi Graphics cards; and it has an unmatched amount of memory onboard designed to provide sharp and powerful DirectX 10.1 gaming and the best multimedia playback at ultra high resolutions with maximum quality settings. Not only does this card natively support HDMI, it is also equipped with a fan-less cooling system, producing absolutely no noise what so ever, therefore allowing home theatre lovers to enjoy enhanced and convenient home multimedia to the fullest.
Microsoft may have already confirmed the Windows XP extension rumour, though they've denied speculation that a Blu-ray drive is being developed for the Xbox 360. The rumour originated from DigiTimes, where Lite-On was said to be developing the drives for Microsoft. The Redmond giant's response reads ?No. Lite-On is not manufacturing Blu-ray drives for Xbox 360". Considering that Microsoft once said they were "considering" Blu-ray, and that they've on no account actually said it will never hit the 360, we're not convinced.
Earlier in the week, we were told to expect an announcement from Microsoft regarding the extension of Windows XP's availability. The source indicated that low-cost notebooks like the Eee PC were the sole reason for lengthening the operating system's life. Microsoft has now lived up to these rumours, and officially announced that XP Home Edition will stay on the market "one year after general availability of the next version of Windows", or at least until June 30th 2010. If Windows 7 is delayed though, XP could remain available past 2011.
When we first heard about the HD 3850 X2, we learned that AMD wasn't providing a reference design, and partners were left to do all the research and development by themselves. Since then, we've seen various pictures of Asus's HD 3850 X2, and learned the specifications. While we're waiting for other partners to unveil their flavors, some naked pictures have surfaced of the HD 3850 X2 from Asus. The shots show that all 16 memory chips are on the same side of the PCB, pushing the two cores closer together.
When Nvidia launched the 8800 GS back in late January, it was seen as a temporary solution to fight AMD's HD 3850, and once the GeForce 9600 GT arrived, it rapidly become an obsolete product. Expreview (via TechReport) now believe that Nvidia will rename the board GeForce 9600 GSO. There are two obvious reasons for this: a name change will boost poor sales due to a lack of advertising, and the board's price and performance slot it nicely into the 9-series. The GSO suffix will signify a slower board than a GT.
We've already been promised that Intel will use IDF to debut various low-cost Atom processors, and they've now done just that. Atom processors were previously known as Silverthorne, and are specifically designed for Mobile Internet Devices, or MIDs. Atom consumes between 0.65W and 2.4W, and borrows Hyper Threading from Nehalem (previously seen in Pentium 4 chips). The first five chips launching are the Z500 (800MHz), Z510 (1.1GHz), Z520 (1.33GHz), Z530 (1.6GHz) and Z540 (1.86GHz).
During the closing day at the rather uneventful Intel Development Forum in Shanghai, Intel had a Nehalem system up and running at 3.2GHz. The processor was a quad-core Bloomfield chip, the desktop derivative of Nehalem. The first Nehalem CPU's will use the current 45nm process, and boast 731 million transistors. Each core has access to 256KB of L2 cache, plus an additional 8MB of L3 cache to share. As well as utilizing the QuickPath interconnect, Nehalem includes an integrated memory controller, which supports three channels.
During the currently underway Intel Developer Forum, Dadi Perlmutter, senior vice president of Intel's mobility group, unveiled a system consisting of Intel's upcoming Montevina mobile platform. Montevina is Intel's replacement for the current Santa Rosa Centrino mobile processors, and will be creatively named Centrino 2. During Perlmutter's demonstration, he noted that Montevina's IGP will offer twice the performance of the current generation Santa Rosa platform - hopefully power consumption isn't compromised.
According to InfoWorld, citing sources "familiar with the situation", Microsoft will be extending XP's availability past June 30th. An announcement is expected to be made sometime this week, possibly at the Intel Developer Forum in Shanghai. InfoWorld note that Intel is using IDF to debut various low-cost notebooks based on its Atom processors, which will no doubt rival the Eee PC. Like the Eee PC, these devices lack the memory resources needed to run Vista, and thus XP remains the only Windows OS worthy of the job.
Right on schedule, Nvidia has rolled out its 9800 GTX. As we've said many times before, this card is essentially an overclocked 8800 GTS 512MB with the addition of three-way SLI and Hybrid Power. In the majority of the reviews below, the board fails to show any superiority to the 8800 GTX - hardly what you'd expect from a new series. Then again, Nvidia has no competition in the mid $300 segment, so there's no need for a huge performance jump. The board costs around the same as most overclocked 8800 GTS 512MB's, so quite good value nonetheless.